conservationist | geographer | innovator | educator | birder



I believe that conservation needs vision – imaginings of futures that we can collectively aspire to create. I work up visions that blend emerging trends in science, technology and society with a sense of confidence, innovation and hope.


I design solutions that are situated – solutions that emerge from an understanding of the cultural assets and political realties of a place interacting with cutting-edge insight from interdisciplinary conservation science.


I engage with current debates within in conservation – through my writing, teaching and convening, I aim to stimulate and support an open, constructive and forward-looking dialogue between the values, ideologies and interest groups that make up our dynamic conservation movement.

Areas of Focus


In 2005 I travelled to Holland with my students to visit rewilding sites and meet with the radical Dutch conservationist involved. I was blown away and have been teaching, debating and writing about rewilding ever since. i am now active in efforts to create the policy space for rewilding to act.

New Technologies Forces

I generate creative ideas and tools to explore the transformative potential of new technological forces for conservation science and practice. These range from radial thought pieces such as opti-hunting to e-decision support designed to strengthen the environmental governance of capital markets. Together which Richard Ladle I defined the new research field of Conservation Culturomics.

Protected Area Policy

Earlier in my a career I specialised in the early phases of a reserve establishment working in the UK, Indonesia and Indochina. I did my doctorate on protected area policy and maintain an active research and teaching interest. I am developing a new PA asset framework to restate the policy case for PA and contrasting my Asian experience with work in Brazil.

Science-Policy Communication

I enjoy science communication and between 2009-2014 led this component of an EU freshwater biodiversity project. We launched the successful freshwater blog, developed a cutting-edge knowledge hub and experimented with art-science videos. Recently I have been researching the public acceptability of tree-breeding solution to ash dieback Through such activities I engage with theory on the design of effective interfaces between science, policy and publics.

Education and Dialogue

I am committed to educating and empowering a new generation of conservation professionals. In my role as MSc course director I have developed and delivered syllabuses, workshops and fieldtrips that promote critical and innovative thinking at the interface of the natural and social science and theory and practice. I also convene one-off events and symposia on emerging or topical themes.

Governing Wildlife Trade

When I led the BirdLife Indonesia programme in the 1990s I came to understand the bird trade from the perspectives of western conservationists, government management agencies, local people and traders. I have worked with local stakeholders to develop culturally-attuned approaches to governing wildlife trade and I regularly contribute to debates in this highly politicized arena of conservation policy.

Speaking Engagements


There are no upcoming events at this time.


Photo: Paul Jepson

Rewilding and the uplands: perspectives on valuing nature

This is the text of a lecture I delivered in the Valuing Nature Keynote lecture series in London on 22 September 2016T —————————————————- Helen Meach, CEO of Rewilding Britain started a recent article in Ecos with the statement “Britain is one of the most ecologically depleted nations on Earth” Given the interplay between ecology, landscape


Investing in Rio State’s protected area assets: a short series of blogs

To coincide with the Rio Olympics we have posted a short series of blogs to reflect on and discuss the future of Rio State’s fabulous state parks. Nature, wildlife and parks are central to Rio’s identity internationally and within Brazil: the iconic statue of Christ the Redeemer watches over the people of Rio de Janeiro


Protected Area assets: a framework to restate the policy case for Brazilian PAs

In the last 30 years Brazil has significantly expanded its network of protected areas (PAs) : nowadays over 17% of terrestrial land and inland waters and 1.5%  of coastal and marine areas are protected. The Brazilian protected area system is the largest in the world. Brazil is recognised internationally for its leadership in biodiversity conservation

Paul in Action


adminFront page